Mineral Database

A mineral is an element or chemical compound that is normally crystalline and that has been formed as a result of geological processes (Nickel, E. H., 1995). Formed within the earth’s rock, through natural formation, minerals come in all shapes, sizes and specification. Housing many different distinguishing features, each mineral has a different process to how its structure is built up over the years.

Quartz is the most common and widely occurring mineral, in its purest form, quartz is transparent, though quartz can be coloured by other minerals and elements. Yellow Quartz, Smoky quartz and Amethyst are all caused by the infiltration of iron, or iron radiation, into the rock (Richard Weston, 2007).

Agate is typically known for its internal banding structure. Not actually classed as a mineral, agate forms with the earth rocks. Each band within the agate is formed over many years, with the changes in atmospheric surroundings affecting the colour difference within each band.  These bands of colour and the natural formation of the mineral are something which could be taken further into design purposes.

Orbicular/Ocean Jasper is identified by its formation which is produced by the inclusion of orbs and spheres. Each new growth with these mineral starts as a one of these tiny orbs, which can merge forming bands, similar to the agate.

Chinese Picture Stones is a grey-blue formation of limestone, often marked by gold, brown and tree like tendrils of black, which create patterns within the surface of the stone. The patterns within these stones could be taken forward into printing. The different layers of colours would work well through a screen with the added detail of these tree like tendrils, making for a very beautiful and abstract piece.

Dendrites are much like Chinese Picture Stone in the way of patter. Where as in the Picture Stones dendrites are small additional features, Dendrites are composted of many tree like tendrils of black, incorporated into stone.

Ammonites are again not classed as a mineral; they area fossil, the most widely known fossil. The typically form in a spiral shell like shape. These creatures lived up to 240 million years ago. Some ammonite shells have delicate patterns just under the top layer of their shell. These can be seen, with a microscope, if the ammonite has been subjected to weathering or artificial polishing.

Thunder Eggs are interesting all unto themselves. They form in a geode or nodule-like rocks that grow in layers. Essentially, Thunder Eggs are spherical rocks, housing agate, jasper or opal centres. From the outside they look like standard rocks, it’s not until sliced open and polished that the true essence of a Thunder Egg is found.


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